Summer Merchant Madness Kicks In Early Doors

An early blog today and already exasperation at merchants has reached the average daily level. Perhaps the sun is getting to people? Anyway this morning I find an advertising enquiry from Bingo Cafe – “I would like to discuss putting up some free money in your site and paying you a CPA for bingo players I recieve” – now that’s at 3.53am. However, 60 seconds is a long time in affiliate marketing, and despite not being able to reply or act upon this email as I was asleep, the following email comes in at 3.54am:

“I have temporarily suspended your traffic on webgains as it seems that your players are not performing on my side…. I looked at your site and I have terrible coverage – if you prepared to give me better positions and drop the offer to 5 pounds free – we can look to get you going again”

Am I Missing Something Here?

Firstly I’m annoyed that my affiliate links have been suspended, without notice or prior discussion. That is not on! I’ve not broken any terms or conditions on the program and think the merchant is well out of order.

I’m sorry I can’t vet players before they leave the site but if they don’t convert, isn’t that an issue the merchant should initially be looking at closer to home? Is “the wrong type of traffic” just an excuse along the lines of “the wrong kind of leaves on the track”?

But hold on, if my traffic is not performing in a low position (and the merchant is there because they don’t perform), why would putting them up higher, with a less competitive offer to other sites make things suddenly better? Why wish to advertise?

Now, if commission structures need to be adjusted all you do is send a nice email to the affiliate and talk to them. You don’t suspend them from the program to attract their attention. Having dead links because you’ve switched them off at 4 in the morning isn’t going to help and the only attention your program gets is from the delete button.

An Update
Good news is that the situation is now being resolved, and amicability is being re-established. Blogging about these incidents is perhaps a knee jerk reaction, but if the process was done properly (i.e. merchant contacts affiliate and talks to them) none of this would be here. The fact is year after year merchants don’t do “the right thing” with regards their affiliate partners and that shouldn’t be the case – not in 2008. If blogging about things is one way to change things, then so be it.